Technological Innovation

What is IEC 60518:2013?

The International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC) has established standards that govern various aspects of technological systems in different industries. One such standard is IEC 60518:2013, which pertains to the measurement of sound from headphones and earphones.

Purpose and Scope

The primary goal of IEC 60518:2013 is to provide standard procedures for measuring the acoustic performance of headphones and earphones. The standard encompasses the assessment of various characteristics, including sensitivity, distortion, frequency response, and impedance.

Measurement Techniques

IEC 60518:2013 outlines precise techniques that must be followed when conducting measurements on headphones and earphones. These techniques involve using an artificial ear simulator that replicates the average human ear's acoustic characteristics and ear canal. The standard specifies the use of a specifically designed coupler, microphone, and an equalization circuitry to measure the output signal accurately.

Moreover, the standard defines specific conditions for the testing environment, ensuring accuracy and reproducibility of measurements. These conditions include temperature, humidity, and other factors that can influence the acoustic performance of the headphones or earphones being tested.

Benefits of Compliance

Adhering to IEC 60518:2013 provides several benefits for manufacturers, consumers, and regulatory bodies. By complying with this standard, manufacturers can ensure consistency and comparability of their products' acoustic performance. It allows them to assess the quality and reliability of their headphones or earphones before bringing them to market.

For consumers, compliance with IEC 60518:2013 ensures that the advertised specifications of the headphones or earphones are accurate and reliable. This enables customers to make informed purchasing decisions based on objective measurements and comparisons.

Regulatory bodies can also benefit from the standard by using it as a reference for establishing regulations related to the safety and performance of headphones and earphones. The standardization provides a framework for assessing and certifying compliance with industry guidelines and norms.


IEC 60518:2013 plays a crucial role in setting the technical standards for measuring sound from headphones and earphones. By following the specified measurement techniques and adhering to the defined conditions, manufacturers can ensure consistency and reliability in their products' acoustic performance. Consumers can rely on these standards to make informed choices, while regulatory bodies can establish guidelines for safety and quality assurance.



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